Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


MSR Report Summary

Project reference: 684713

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - MSR (Multifunctional Satellite Radiator)

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

The project aims to develop a new class of satellite radiators for small- and medium size spacecrafts that combine beneficial features of existing concepts. Radiator panels are traditionally made of honeycomb sandwich panels or integrally milled metal. Both solutions have their main advantage. Honeycomb sandwich design provides the best stiffness-to-weight ratio, but offers poor protection against radiation and space debris. It is also less competitive compared to integrally milled version in terms of thermal performance and stability, which essential to maintain the temperature of attached hardware within the desired – sometimes very narrow – range. Integral radiators are featured by good thermal performance and protective capability due to the relatively thick radiative plate, but have limitations in terms of mechanical performance due to low stiffness-to-weight ratio especially in cases when large radiative area is required. The idea behind MSR concept is that there might be special cases, when engineers need to find a balance between the two conventional solutions. For example if enlargement of radiative area is required without mass and stiffness penalty and only a small increase of radiation dose can be tolerated by the attached hardware then radiator made of Aluminium Foam Sandwich (AFS) might be a good way to go. AFS panels represent the missing link between solid and sandwich structures. They have cellular core in the middle just like sandwich panels, which unlike honeycomb has isotropic properties and metallic bond with the skins similarly to bulk materials. In this study the viability of AFS radiator concept is investigated from technical and economical aspects.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

During the project technical study, analysis, preliminary tests and business environment analysis have been performed. The project team focused on technical aspects because in case of new space equipment appearing on market the engineering part is the most important factor.
It has been demonstrated that Multifunctional Satellite Radiator concept provides competitive technical advantages compared to conventional solutions especially when debris and radiation protection shall associate with weight effectiveness. From many aspect properties of radiator panels manufactured from Aluminum Foam Sandwich lies between honeycomb and integrally milled design thus they are able to fill the gap between conventional solutions providing more freedom to engineers in satellite thermal control design. Manufacturing costs of an AFS hardware doesn’t differs from traditional concepts except the raw material price, which however only a fraction of the price of the end product due to the high added value coming from extensive design, documentation and verification activities. It is envisaged that total invested project budged of about 1million Euros can be returned with 2-3 contracts in five years after concept debut as flight hardware. Preliminary analysis and test results show that concept is promising and project worth continuation.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

The most important result of this H2020 project is the proven of viability of Multifunctional Satellite Radiator concept. The feasibility study shows that this engineering solution is an alternative answer to the special combination of requirements containing thermal, mechanical, debris and radiation protection. Because of the increasing number of launced satellites and the more price sensitive market multifunctional applications importance is growing. Applying this solution the customers will be more competitive thanks to the special combination of requested performance parameters. The feasibility study demonstrates that one million EUR additional financial support leads to a market ready product with sophisticated company internal structure that generates 0,5-1 million revenue growth for Admatis in space sector. Stabile R&D SME from Hungary is essential for EU to be able to be more competitive worldwide.

Related information

Record Number: 186391 / Last updated on: 2016-07-11